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Little British Car Club

Discussion in 'USA Northeast Riders' started by Mr. 36654, Sep 24, 2017.

  1. Mr. 36654

    Mr. 36654 Well-Known Member

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    OK, I've been ribbing my Bro-In-Law for the past two years about his purchase of a mid-70's MGB so he could "tool" around with his LBCC buddies. Yes, I commonly refer to it as the LGBT club and frequently comment on good Miata's offerings. But, hey, I've had discussions with my sister on using "GUNK" engine flush on these older engines, so it's also been a bonding experience. Besides, these are older folks, bonding at this point is pure quality time.

    For some reason, this past summer has been the summer of Little British Cars during my weekend rides and in the most remote areas. With nothing around for miles, you'll see a string of 4 or 5 playing road racer with their massive engines (when going down hill). Miles from cell service and no tow vehicle in sight... they motor along. Obviously, not piloted by sane drivers, I've come to wonder if they are real or just a string of ghosts, motoring far way from the garage that would house such an earthly British Car of this vintage?
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2017
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  2. jlduck

    jlduck Well-Known Member

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    Ha ha! Never buy a British sports car made after 1967! Here's a shot of me in my buddy's 1960 Bugeye (Frogeye, to you Brits) Sprite. Notice it is safely parked in the driveway next to my RS! (actually, I had just returned from a short drive around Pasadena!) bugeye.jpg
     
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  3. Aussie Import

    Aussie Import Well-Known Member

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    The Pommie sports cars are well loved here in Melbourne. When you get up to them, and see, say a Sprite or an MG Midget, they are so tiny. I am pretty sure my Spyder is larger - and it most certainly has more power. Tiny (1275 cc) 4 cylinder push-rod engines with 3 main bearings (on some) and a massive output of up to 60 horsepower. Or the MGB, the 1800 pushrod motor that with its "multiple mains" and twin carburettors made a massive 95 hp (compared to the 88 in the single carby Austin 1800).
    Unfortunately the main battle in owning these things seems to be rust, wear and electrics. None of those things are glamorous - it is not like putting a modern "Hemi" into a 1960's Plymouth Barracuda.
    IN a couple of weeks Melbourne hosts an event, MotorClassica, which has some wonderful and rare cars - and a few motorcycles, typically pre-WWI and WWII. I will see if my much more knowledgeable mate is available, and if he is, try to get there again. The last time we went they had a selection of Studebaker Avantis - beautiful car, well ahead of its time. Rare as anything.
     
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  4. roger coleman

    roger coleman Well-Known Member

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    looks just like my very first car, YDD361
    loved that little car, took me all over the UK to race tracks
     
  5. Mr. 36654

    Mr. 36654 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for reminding me about the Avanti. The new generation Studebaker's of the early 1950's are one of the few examples of a truly innovative period for a US manufacturer. Sadly, product innovation is only one part of the recipe for success.

    It's ironic, Studebacker evolved into the US distributor of Mercedes from the mid-1950's thru 1966.
     
  6. vat

    vat Active Member

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    I've long had the bug to own a little British sports car. Back in the late 60's my sister had a 63 MGB, I spent many an hour sitting in the drivers seat in the driveway carving up the roads. Last weekend I went to a local euro car show, full of all the latest and greatest as well as lots of old Brit cars. But I spent a few hours drooling over old MG's Triumph's and Austin Healy's. The bug has bitten and I've started to look for a retirement project that I can afford. I've come across a few somewhat affordable MG's and Austin Healy's that aren't total rust buckets. My brain keeps screaming at me NO but my heart seems to be screaming louder.
     
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  7. Mr. 36654

    Mr. 36654 Well-Known Member

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    Life is short. Miata's are affordable.
     
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  8. ray2

    ray2 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    Hear. Hear.
    I had my '73 MG until I ran out of weekends and patience. (OK, so about a year.)

    I recall when the Miata came out as an upgraded copy of the Lotus Elan, a fan of Lucas electronics who must have enjoyed spending a lot of time locked in the garage, suggested that the Miata incorporate not only an artificial oil puddle for the garage floor, but also a computer in the electronics to arbitrarily and randomly knock out part of the electronics from time to time - to give it the feel of a traditional British Leyland or Lotus product....

    "Less wrenching=more riding."
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2017
  9. Bub

    Bub Active Member

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    I had a '69 Triumph Spitfire when I was 18 in 1977, biggest piece of crap I ever owned, but it was really fun when it ran! After the second time I lost a wire rear wheel while driving, I thought I better take a closer look at the knock offs and hubs. Who'd have guessed the hubs are left and and right side specific and they were on the wrong sides of the car!? :eek:
     
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  10. vat

    vat Active Member

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    Who'd have guessed the hubs are left and and right side specific and they were on the wrong sides of the car!?

    You learn something everyday.
     
  11. vat

    vat Active Member

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    And that's why my Airheads sit in the garage
     
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  12. Aussie Import

    Aussie Import Well-Known Member

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    In Oz and the USA the Mopar cars of the 60s had left hand thread on one side of the car. The studs had a stamped L to alert you. The warning didn't always work and it led to swearing, defeat or broken wheel studs.
    Obviously it was far more important with knock off hubs.
     
  13. James Bagley

    James Bagley Well-Known Member

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    My first car was a 1967 Morris Garage B Model. The joy lasted 4 months before I was t-boned by a Buick Electra 225...
     
  14. Richard230

    Richard230 Well-Known Member Contributor

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    My first car was a 1958 DKW (Auto Union - now Audi) Junior 2-door sedan, powered by a 28 HP, 800cc, 3-cylinder, two-stroke, cooled by thermosyphon (no water pump), with a 4-speed gearbox that disconnected from the front 12" drive wheels when the throttle was lifted. And you think British cars were bad? ;)
     
  15. Aussie Import

    Aussie Import Well-Known Member

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    1952 Morris Minor - the one with the headlights in the grill. 750 or 800 flathead. Electric starter was u/s so I used the crank. Lucas fuel pump worked 90% of the time. Holes in floor so I could watch the front scissors damper shaking. Water leaks. Underpowered. Loveable.
     

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